Opposition Senator Francis ‘’Kiko’’ N. Pangilinan sees the possibility of the Philippines deporting about four million Chinese who came into the country illegally or through questionable means.

KIKOPANGILINAN - Senator Kiko suggests formation of TF to pinpoint illegal entrants
Senator Francis Pangilinan
(Photo from Kiko Pangilinan website / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

Pangilinan cited the admission of the Bureau of Immigration (BID) that some four million Chinese nationals who entered and stayed in the country from 2017 to 2020.

This constitutes a ‘’soft invasion’’ of millions of Chinese nationals in the country, he added.

‘’Karamihan dito ay dahil sa ‘Pastillas’, kurakot at panunuhol sa BID,’’ he said. (Most of them came into the country through the ‘Pastillas’’ scheme, corruption and bribery at BID).

One of Pangilinan’s suggestions is for the formation of an Inter Agency Task Force under the Department of Justice In coordination with the Department of National Defense, National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine National Police (PNP), BID and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) to locate these illegal entrants and deport them.        

Pangilinan also asked for the adoption of stringent entry procedures for Chinese nationals and other foreigners at Philippine airports.

He, likewise, urged the DND and the PNP to defend the security of the country.

‘’At alamin ang mga implikasyon ng ‘soft invasion’ na ito ng milyun-milyong mga Chinese Nationals sa ating bansa,’’ he added, (And study the implications of this ‘soft invasion’ by Chinese nationals in the country.)

In a related development, Senator Richard J. Gordon expressed concern last Monday that Chinese retirees, mostly 35 year olds, compose 40 percent of the total foreign retirees in the country.

During the budget deliberation in the committee level for the Department of Tourism and its attached agencies which includes the Philippine Retirement Authority, Gordon directed Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat and PRA General Manager Bienvenido Chy to submit a report on the foreign retirees in the country and on PRA’s policies.

In a recent public hearing by the Senate finance committee on the proposed 2021 P666 billion of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), it was learned that a substantial number of Chinese workers are employed in China-funded infrastructure projects in the country.

Pangilinan asid the high number of Chinese workers prejudiced the employment opportunities of Filipinos who have lost their jobs in the coiuntrty and abroad because of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In another development, Senator Risa Hontiveros said the issuance  by the BID of D.O. No. 41 and the appointment of the father and son team of Maynardo and Marc Red Marinas at gatekeeper positions at the BID opened the flood gates for the almost uncontrolled entry of Chinese nationals into the country.

According to the figures provided by the Bureau, there have been about four million Chinese nationals who have entered the country since 2017, she said.

‘’The numbers are staggering. For the sake of comparison, four million Chinese nationals arriving here since 2017 is comparable to more than the entire population of Quezon City,’’ she added.

Around three million of these non-VUA (visa upon arrival) applicants are believed to have paid the extra P10,000 service fee in the ‘pastillas’ scam. The rest are-VUAs.

With lax oversight on the VUA system and a pastillas syndicate in place, a red carpet was rolled out for the online gambling industry and the cross border trafficking of women. How much did these syndicates earn?

‘’Going by the numbers floated at today’s hearing (October 20), upwards of P30 billion pesos, perhaps as high as P40 billion. Enough for public officers who had just lost their overtime pay and struggling to make ends meet, to live the high life, drinking expensive alcohol in high class night clubs and vacationing abroad almost monthly,’’ she said.

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